Using UTF-8 and Unicode data with Perl’s MIME::Lite

MIME::Lite predates Perl 5.8 which supports Unicode and UTF-8. But it's easy to get MIME::Lite to work with Unicode bodies and subjects.

To attach a plain text part to a message, with a string which contains unicode characters, use:

   Type => 'text/plain; charset=UTF-8',
   Data => encode("utf8", $utf8string),

To set the subject of a mail from a string containing unicode characters, use:

use MIME::Base64;
my $msg = MIME::Lite->new(
   Subject =>   "=?UTF-8?B?" .
      encode_base64(encode("utf8", $subj), "") . "?=",

Note that the above methods also work even if the strings do not contain unicode characters, or do not have the UTF-8 bit set.

It would be better to change MIME::Lite such that subject and data strings are accepted and the above code happens inside MIME::Lite. I've filed a bug report. It was rejected.

This article is © Adrian Smith.
It was originally published on 27 Feb 2007
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